Friday, 21 February 2014

Blood is thicker than water?

As a rule I tend not to write about my family here on blogger
But after this week I feel I have to

As you know I live with my mother
It's just the two of us here
How ever during the week my mother works away
So she is gone from Monday/Tuesday until Thursday
A couple of years ago I was very ill so when my mother went away to work, my Dad came here to stay with me
My parents are separated so during the week they swap houses
It's sounds bizarre I know
So this week it was back to the usual routine and my Dad came down on Monday
Also my sister broke her leg the day I came home from hospital so we are all on call to help her

My Dad arrived down on Monday afternoon
When he came I was having tea with a couple of biscuits
When I was finished I went to the bathroom as we were heading out
I came out to the car and my Dad started having a go at me
'Why are you eating those biscuits when you are just going to purge them?'
He seemed incredibly angry
I immediately became defensive as I genuinely hadn't purged
We had a heated exchange in the garden
Then he grabbed my nose and twisted it so hard that I yelped
I was in shock
I felt like I had been hit
I just felt so hurt

The rest of the week was so hard
My Dad was constantly making smart and sarcastic comments about me and my illness
He kept saying that he was sick of looking at me and my sister
And putting me down all the time
He pretended that he was just joking
But really it was very hurtful
Everything I did was wrong
Everything I said he made fun of me
By the end of the week I was so drained and I couldn't wait for him to leave

My mother came home last night and I just broke down in tears
I had been holding it in all week
She was so upset
She made the point that this is my home and that kind of behaviour is totally unacceptable
My Dad obviously felt bad about his actions as he sent me a couple of texts saying he was sorry
He knows that he upset me
He just doesn't know how much

I get that he must be so frustrated with me
I get that he feels powerless and helpless
I get that I put them through the hassle of treatment yet again and nothing seems to have changed
But to lash out at me like that is just not ok
Grabbing my nose like that was completely out of order
My mother said that he has absolutely no right to lay a hand on me
And she is right

My Dad just seems so angry with me
I do understand that he has lived wit this for a long time and it must be so difficult to witness me slowly kill myself
But he needs to separate himself from the situation
He really has a lot of issues himself
Growing up he was an alcoholic but he would never admit to that
He stopped drinking a few years ago but his controlling behaviour hasn't changed at all
I just don't need this right now
I have enough on my plate just trying to get through the day without going insane
And treating me like this does not make me want to get well
It just sends me further in to my illness
It's pointless saying all this to him as he just doesn't listen
I'm thinking of asking Mary if I could have a session with my Dad
I hope it will help

Things are tough at the moment
I just don't know what to do with myself
I can't say that I am motivated to recover because that would be a lie
I am just trying to hold my ground and not get any worse
My weight is going down though
Along with my mood and my sanity
Sometimes I wish I was back in hospital
As hard as it was to be there, it was so lovely to be surrounded by people
I miss them

Overall my family is great
I have put them through hell over the last 10 years
I am blessed that they have stood my me all this time
But I think that I am in an unhealthy situation with my Dad
His life revolves around me and that's not good
I need space from him
I need him to step back and let me breathe
I love my family
I really do
But my Dad treating me like this is not helping at all
I need love and support and empathy
Not sarcasm and passive aggression and anger
There is enough hate in the world
My home is supposed to be a safe place
It's supposed to be the one place I can be me
I am starting to resent my father and I don't want to feel that way
I need his support
Not his judgement

What about you?
How are the people in your life about your eating disorder?
Are they understanding?
Are they angry?
Answers on a postcard please........


  1. Ruby, I wonder if he's trying (and failing) at providing tough love. I think a session with the two of you and Mary is a good idea.

    I wish I could say something to make things better.

  2. Ruby I am so sorry that on top of everything you now feel hurt by someone you love. Reading this brought tears to my eyes because in some ways I have acted similarly to my husband at times. Sometimes I fail at separating his illness from him and get upset about the manic or psychotic episode he is having. I have yelled at him, made passive aggressive comments and been sarcastic numerous times and I know that it was just hurtful and far from helpful. It was all due to frustration with the illness and helplessness I feel in wanting to take care of him. By no means is it acceptable and I have come to understand my feelings and what actions and tools I should use instead. I hope for you and your father that this is a one time only situation and that with Mary you can process this in a meaningful way. Your father might not be okay with seeing Mary with you and that would be very frustrating but he might not be fully able to process his feelings at this time. You said he has been sober for a few years but he still has some of the horrible issues and actions that comes with addition, you might not feel like this is truly resolved for some time. But I hope you find peace.

  3. I am so sorry that your dad reacted the way that he did. It wasn't fair for him to assume something, although everyone that lives with someone with an ed does assume. His behavior was unacceptable. My dad is the same way when it comes to my eating disorder. He makes jokes about how skinny I am or will make jokes that I am eating too much. It's very hurtful. I hope that next time he comes to your house, that he will treat you with more respect. Sending my thoughts and love your way.

  4. Ruby, I think your father was misguided and frustrated... Hopefully he has learned his lesson that no can push or bully anyone into change.. they have to want it for themselves... hugs to you girl, you are always in my thoughts :)

  5. I'm so sorry this happened, and it's incredibly hurtful and upsetting. I think a session with Mary for you and your dad together is a really good idea. It seems like he was lashing out with his own feelings of helplessness, but it would be good if he could find/use an outlet that's healthy for all involved. Maybe therapy for him for a while? Maybe a support group of some sort? Good luck!

  6. Oh Ruby, I'm so sorry. He had absolutely no right to lash out like that, let alone physically hurt you. I feel so sad for you dear. You have enough going on as it is without your dad adding extra stress and negativity. Please do ask Mary about having a session with him. It could do a lot of good. As Alie suggested above, maybe going to a support group for family members of people with EDs could be helpful for him.

    For the most part, I think I have a pretty amazing family when it comes to my ED, and mental health in general. My brother was mentally ill too when he was younger, so it's been a part of daily life for quite some time. They're always supportive and we've always talked about mental illness in a very open and honest way. But I know my family do get tired of me and my behaviors at times, and I really don't blame them, I know it can't be easy to live with me, but it's rare that they lash out at me like your dad did to you.

    A particularly horrible psychiatrist once told me that my family would get tired of me and my issues, that everyone I loved would leave me. No matter how much they tell me it won't happen, it still upsets me and I honestly believe they will leave one day. He also told me that there were two approaches to 'dealing with people like me'. There's the 'tough love' aggressive way, and there's the supportive empathetic way. He chose the aggressive way. I know it works for others, but like you it only makes me sink lower and lower.

    Lots of love to you sweetheart. You're in my thoughts, always.

  7. I understand that dealing with severe, debilitating mental illness is draining for your parents as well as you. I understand why there would be periods when they are not at their best because they are utterly helpless as they watch you destroy yourself.

    But what he did is not ok. He violated your physical boundaries (and the face is a VERY personal area) and deliberately caused pain. It is no less abuse than if he had outright slapped you. He said and did things that hurt you then acted like the fact that you were hurt was not important. NOT OK.

    I hope that he will at least go to see Mary. As an addict himself he obviously has a limited toolkit for dealing with conflict and stress. Learning some ways to cope and communicate could really help you both.

  8. Keep in mind that the original saying goes, "The Blood of the Covenant is Thicker than the Water of the Womb"... your readers will always love and support you, so if he is hindering your wellness, you are more than justified in cutting him from your life until he can be trusted to meddle in it.

    Be well. :)

  9. Your dad has a right to be frustrated and angry but no right to react like that.

    My family knows nothing about my food problems. They find my brother's drug addiction more acceptable than my prescription antidepressants.

    Love you Ruby <3


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